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5 Things to Do With Clothes You Don’t Wear

Our closets are essentially a large shadowbox of our time in college: the trusty jeans that are as old as your closest friendships, the weird cutout dress you liked for about the same length of time as your first one-night-stand, and the crumpled-up suit that’s just as awkward as all your formal group presentations. Nevertheless, it’s time to lose some of those garments to make room for future buys and to take another step toward a Pinterest-worthy wardrobe/walk in closet. Included below are some ideas for what to do with the clothes you’ve decided to permanently remove from your closet.

And no, this is not one of the things to do:

1. Donate to H&M’s Sustainability Initiative

Photo by Lindsey Thompson

As a part of H&M’s Conscious collection and their ongoing effort to reduce their impact on the environment, the Sweden-based company has held an on-going clothing recycle program since 2013. All you do is bring in a bag (or bags) of clothes you no longer wear and you’ll be rewarded with a discount on your next purchase. If you’re up for multiple trips, just keep bringing some clothes to donate every time you go shopping to really take advantage of the coupons.


2. Sell to Buffalo Exchange for some extra CA$H

If you’re not into shopping at H&M, the other option for a monetary return on your donations is to sell them to Buffalo Exchange (17th and Chestnut) for some cash or in-store credit. If they decide not to buy some of your items, they have a donation bin that can take the rejects. I recommend going early in the day to avoid a long line for selling and a higher chance of having room in the donations bin – once its full, they don’t take any more donations for the day. 


3. Drop off at Good Will locations

Image courtesy of Photopin

For those of you looking to get physical credit for your donation and want to feel confident about where the donations end up, there are multiple Good Will donation sites located around Philadelphia. Unfortunately, none of them are within walking distance of campus, but if you have a friend with a car or a 10% off Lyft coupon, it can be worth the ride. It’s a simple drop off procedure, just make sure your bags of donations are securely tied and you get a receipt for your donation if you want to claim a charitable tax deduction.  


4. Hold a Swap Meet with friends

With spring around the corner, the mentality of “spring cleaning” is hanging over our dusty Wi-Fi routers, encourage your friends to clean out their closets with you and host a clothing swap! Just establish a time and location that works for your crew and bring all the pieces you no longer wear. You’ll barter and trade items with your friends to add some new and exciting pieces to your wardrobe and your old clothes will have found a new home.


5. Turn them into useful DIYs

Photo by Lindsey Thompson

You can finally put all those free t-shirts used to attract college kids to promotional tables to use! The most popular up-cycle of clothing is turning old t-shirts into fun rugs for cold dorm room floors (instructions found here for smooth and here for shag). Some other options include a t-shirt quilt to preserve the more significant shirts or cutting them up to create dishrags. Other upcycling ideas include dip-dying, bleaching, adding patches to old denim pieces, or creatively using paint to cover up permanent stains. I turned a bleach stain on this shirt into a galaxy print and got a few more years out of it!


There you have it! Purging your clothes will always feel good, especially knowing that the clothing isn’t going to waste. You just might be able to score some discounts, new clothes, or even cash just by emptying your closet of clothes you never wear. Plus, you’ll have extra space for some new pieces. What do you do with your clothes after you purge your closet? Let us know in the comments or on our Facebook!


Cover Image courtesy of Photopin


Attribution to Photopin: photo credit: hmmlargeart <a href=”/%3Ca%20href%3D”http://www.flickr.com/photos/52143276″>http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/1624184388″>finished for now</a> via <a href=”/%3Ca%20href%3D”http://photopin.com”>http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”/%3Ca%20href%3D”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a>

Lindsey is a senior at Drexel University, majoring in operations management & bus. analytics. She has been with Her Campus Drexel for four years and was CC for the middle two. Along with living the city life, she takes an active interest in street style, putting together puzzles and binge-watching her current Netflix obsession. She actually calls Montana her true home so now you can say you know that someone actually lives there ;). When she's in Philly, you can find her in Center City scouring the racks of thrift stores, Old Navy, and H&M if she's not on campus enjoying the multiple food trucks or catching up on the readings she put off until the last day.
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